How to Prepare for a Home Inspection

Preparing Your Property for a Certified Home Inspection

We look forward to helping you evaluate your current or potential home. In order to prepare for your scheduled home inspection, please review the following information before the inspector’s arrival. Please note that we are unable to move furniture, personal property, pictures, or lift rugs, so please have the home’s interior and exterior as accessible as possible!

Before a Home Inspection: What You Need to Know

Here’s how to get ready for your home inspection:

  1. Inform us prior to our arrival if you are aware of any dangerous conditions of the home or property or any unusual conditions we should know about.
  2. We need all utilities turned on, including water, electricity, and gas, as well as any gas pilot lights lit, prior to our arrival in order to fully check all appliances and systems. We are unable to turn on any utility services.
  3. An agent or home owner needs to be present at the home to let us in or we need a means to unlock and enter all areas of the home and property. This includes yard gates and garage doors.
  4. We ask that all pets, especially dogs and other distracting or possibly dangerous animals, be secured in an enclosed and removed area such as a dog run, or removed from the property entirely. This allows us full access to all areas of the home, garage and adjacent property.
  5. We will be reviewing all rooms and closets throughout the house, so please ensure that the home is as free of excess belongings and stored items as is practical.
  6. We need access, with visibility, to as much of the garage area as possible, preferably  with cars moved outside.
  7. We will be operating all kitchen appliances (excluding refrigerators) and opening cabinets, so access is necessary. We also like to run the dishwasher through a complete cycle.  We will not operate the dishwasher if there are dishes in it.  Dishwasher must be empty and plugged in.
  8. We will be running water through all faucets, sinks, showers, bathtubs, and toilets and will need access under and around all of these to inspect the plumbing. We do not move items, including those under sinks, in tubs and showers.
  9. We will be opening all accessible window and doors, so we need clear access to as many as practical.
  10. We do not inspect window coverings. Please have all window coverings opened or pulled up so that we have full access to the windows, for a thorough inspection of the windows. Due to the age of some window coverings and their delicate state, we do not touch window coverings to open them or pull them up, in the event they may break or fall apart.
  11. We will need access to all attic area hatches, with room to set up a ladder below them.
  12. We will need access to crawl space hatches.
  13. We will need access to main electrical panel, and any electrical sub-panels, with a minimum of three-foot clearance in front and to both sides. Please note that this is also a safety requirement.
  14. We will need adequate access to furnace area and air conditioner unit.
  15. We will need adequate access to the water heater.
  16. We will operate all accessible light switches and ceiling fans and check a representative number of electrical outlets, so we need working light bulbs installed along with access to as many outlets as practical. We don’t expect you to unplug your everyday appliances.
  17. To minimize distractions, the fewer number of people present during the actual inspection the better, to avoid unnecessarily interrupting the inspector. We always encourage clients to be present at the conclusion of the inspection to review our findings and allow us to point out any relevant conditions as well as answer any additional questions.

Please remember that our home inspector will need the above items attended to prior to our arrival. We encourage you to maximize full access to all areas of the home, garage, and property—or your inspection will not be as complete as you deserve.

Call Our Douglas County Home Inspector for More Information

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation! We look forward to serving you. If you have any questions prior to your appointment, feel free to contact NorWest Home Inspections at (541) 459-1167.

Prepared and provided by NorWest Home Inspections, 541 459-1167 CCB #195225 OCHI #1650


How To Prepare For A Home Inspection

How to Prepare for a Home Inspection - 2019 (pdf)


NorWest Home Inspections

Lynn Niderost 

Certified Home Inspector   

CCB #195225   OCHI #1650